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David Copperfield Analysis

Keywords: humour and pathos, david copperfield examination, charles dickens david copperfield

Introduction to the background, Charles Dickens and his work- David Copperfield

Charles Dickens, typically the most popular writer of the Victorian get older, was born near Portsmouth, Britain, in 1812 and he passed on in Kent in 1870. When his daddy was tossed into debtors' prison, young Charles was removed from school and forced to work in a shoe-polish manufacturer, which may help describe the presence of so many abandoned and victimized children in his novels. As a man, he functioned as a reporter before starting his job as a fictional writer in 1833. In his books, short tales and essays, Dickens mixed hilarious funny with a scathing criticism of the inhuman features of Victorian industrial world. Many of his novels - Great Goals, A Xmas Carol, Oliver Twist, etc. , have been made into first-rate Television set and film types. David Copperfield is the storyplot of the narrator's life from early on child years to adulthood. In it, David describes all the obstructions he had to overcome in order to acquire peace of mind and economic steadiness.

Review of the literature David Copperfield


The story commences with the widowed Clara Copperfield awaiting the labor and birth of her first child. She obtains a surprise visit from her husband's aunt, Betsey Trotwood, who insists the kid will be a girl, and should be known as after her. The child is, in simple fact, a son, and she leaves, greatly disappointed. The youngster who is created is David Copperfield, the protagonist. His early on years are happy, as he lives with his mother and her housekeeper Peggotty, however when Clara falls in love with Edward Murdstone, David's life requires a move for the worse. When David is directed off with Peggotty to Yarmouth to spend a few weeks with her sibling, he fits Emily, his first love, and her cousin Ham, both of whom are under Mr. Peggotty's good care. When he results, he locates that his mother has married Murdstone. Murdstone is a severe, cruel man who is better than David and browbeats Clara into distribution with the aid of his sister Jane. After David resists Murdstone's severe treatment, he's dispatched off to Salem House, a miserable college under the oversight of Mr. Creakle, a brutal and incompetent master. There he meets Steerforth and Traddles - the first a hero to the more youthful David, though completely unworthy of his admiration, and the next a kindly and cheerful boy who will become a lifelong friend. Following a semester at Salem House, David gets term that his mom and her newborn son had passed on, and he results home. It really is obvious that the Murdstones want nothing to do with him. Peggotty is terminated as housekeeper, and she marries the coach-driver Barkis and goes back again to Yarmouth.

David, meanwhile, is delivered to work in a factory in London at the age of ten. He hates his job and seems that the men and boys around him are beneath him, though he profits some consolation from the Micawber family, with whom he lodges. Micawber can be an incompetent optimist, totally not capable of controlling money, but constantly certain that "something will arrive. " If the Micawbers leave London, David operates from the manufacturer and walks across the country to Dover, seeking shelter from his eccentric great aunt Betsey Trotwood. She will take him in and adopts him, refusing the claim that the Murdstones stake to him, and he lives happily with her and her feeble-minded good friend Mr. Dick. She then delivers him to Canterbury to the school of Dr. Strong, an able and kindly instructor. While in Canterbury, he lodges with Mr. Wickfield, who is Betsey's attorney at law, and complies with his little girl Agnes, who becomes his dearest friend. He also encounters Wickfield's clerk, the simpering and hypocritical Uriah Heep, who hides behind a cover up of humility. Potential trouble looms on the horizon as we discover that Wickfield drinks too much, and this Dr. Strong's very young partner Annie may be too keen on her cousin Jack Maldon. When David completes university, he again encounters Steerforth. Each of them visit Yarmouth, where David presents Steerforth to his friends the Peggottys. By this time around, Ham and Emily are employed, but Steerforth notices the lovely Emily. He acts in a friendly manner toward the Peggottys and becomes popular among the townsfolk, but inwardly despises them as his inferiors.

When David comes back to London, he pursues a career as a law clerk, and becomes reacquainted along with his old good friend Traddles, who is now studying to become a lawyer. David accepts career a Spenlow and Jorkins, and soon comes in love with Spenlow's girl, the lovely but poor Dora. He courts her secretly, however when he declares his intentions, Spenlow denies his permission. Soon thereafter, Spenlow dies and Dora is given into the care of her older maiden aunts. On the other hand, David hears that Barkis is dying and returns to Yarmouth. While he's there, Barkis dies, however the greater tragedy is that Emily, despite being involved to Ham, has run away with Steerforth to become a woman. Daniel Peggotty vows to invest the rest of his life, if required, to find her. When David message or calls on Mrs. Steerforth, she insists that she will never allow her child to marry Emily, and will disown him if he will try. To her way of thinking, the whole thing is Emily's mistake for seeking to go above her position in population. Her associate, Rosa Dartle, who is definitely in love with Steerforth, flies into a jealous trend.

David, no longer able to work at Spenlow and Jorkins, requires a job as secretary to Dr. Strong, while Micawber has turned into a clerk at Wickfield and Heep (Uriah has insinuated himself into the business by blackmailing Wickfield, and has been called somebody). David soon marries Dora. Though they love the other person dearly, it soon becomes clear that she actually is totally helpless as a homemaker, and is also intellectually unsuited to her husband. David, meanwhile, becomes a papers reporter, authoring the debates in Parliament, and finally a famous novelist. In the mean time, Steerforth has cast Emily apart and tried to give her to his manservant Littimer. Emily operates away and sees her way to London, where she encounters Martha Endell, a "fallen woman" whom she acquired helped a long time before. Martha tips off David and Mr. Peggotty, and Emily is reunited with her foster daddy, who plans for taking her to Australia, where her pity is unknown.

With the assistance of Micawber, Traddles, Betsey, Mr. Dick, and David, Uriah's perfidy is shown and his try to marry Agnes is averted. In gratitude, Betsey offers to fund a trip to Australia for the Micawbers, who opt to emigrate along with Daniel Peggotty, Emily, Daniel's boarder Mrs. Gummidge, and Martha Endell. Betsey also regains her home in Dover, which was thought to have been lost through the machinations of Heep. Inevitably, both Heep and Littimer wind up in jail because of scams and fraud, respectively.

Following a miscarriage, Dora dies. In the meantime, Ham is killed in an awful storm off the Yarmouth shore; ironically, the person he dies seeking to save lots of is Steerforth, who's also wiped out. Peggotty, now left only, becomes the housekeeper for Betsey, while David vacations abroad for 3 years to assuage his grief. When he profits, he inquires about Agnes, and his aunt leads him to trust she's "an connection. " David is convinced that he has ruined any chance he previously of getting Agnes' love by treating her just like a sister for each one of these years and seeking her advice when courting the items of his many affectionate attachments. When questioning Agnes about her"attachment, " it soon becomes clear that he's the object of it. Both profess their love and soon marry, living happily ever before after.

main characters

David Copperfield - The protagonist of the novel, David's daddy dies before his labor and birth, and his mom follows when he's still quite young. He is treated badly by his stepfather Mr. Murdstone and her sister. They send him to work in a manufacturer at the age of ten. He later operates away to have with his great-aunt, from whence he would go to school, becomes a regulation clerk, a court reporter, and lastly a famous novelist. Among the many loves of his life, he marries Dora Spenlow, who dies a couple of years later, then Agnes Wickfield.

Clara Copperfield - David's mom, a sort but weak-willed woman who is dominated by her second husband and dies shortly after the labor and birth of her second child.

Clara Peggotty - The Copperfields' housekeeper, she is unfailingly kind and dedicated to David. She marries Barkis, lives for some time in Yarmouth, and later becomes Betsey Trotwood's housekeeper after Barkis dies.

Edward Murdstone - Clara Copperfield's second spouse, he is cruel and severe to both David and his mother. He is better than David after he resists his severe treatment, delivers him off to a pitiful school, then makes him work in a manufacturing plant.

Jane Murdstone - Edward's sister, she helps her brother in completely breaking the will of Clara Copperfield. She later becomes the hired companion of Dora Spenlow.

Mr. Barkis - A kind cart-driver who transports David on many of his years as a child journeys, he uses David to connect his marriage proposal to Peggotty, who finally accepts him.

Daniel Peggotty - Peggotty's sibling, he is fisherman in Yarmouth. He's a widower who adopts his niece Emily and his nephew Ham after their parents die, and can take Mrs. Gummidge, a widow, into his home. He offers up everything to search for Emily after she will go astray, and, after he locates her, immigrates to Australia with her and Mrs. Gummidge.

Emily Peggotty - "Little Emily, " a beautiful young woman, is David's first love. Due to her desire to go up above her train station in life and be a female, she works off with Steerforth instead of going right through with her prepared marriage to her cousin Ham. After many years of disgrace living in foreign countries, she comes back to London, where her uncle finds her and requires her off to Australia.

Ham Peggotty - Daniel's nephew and Emily's cousin, he's a fine, simple son who wants nothing more than to marry Emily and live the life of the sea. When Emily works off with Steerforth, he recklessly throws himself into every recovery party that is required at Yarmouth, and finally dies in a horrendous surprise. Ironically, the man he swims out to save lots of is Steerforth, who also dies in the tempest.

Martha Endell - A Yarmouth woman who may have fallen into immorality, she is cared for kindly by Emily, and plays a key role in assisting Daniel to find Emily after her own show up. She, too, emigrates to Australia, where she later marries.


David Copperfield, probably since it is partially autobiographical, was Dickens' own favorite among his novels. Whereas he usually concentrates on a specific public problem, which becomes his main theme, here the theme is personal. In David Copperfield he attemptedto come to conditions with the studies and humiliations of his years as a child and youth, writing as a guy who had overcome his humble origins and be the most successful novelist of his time. David's life will not directly reflect Dickens' life, but important occurrences that had remaining a prolonged impression on him are reproduced with little alteration. Dickens was extracted from school at the age of 12 when his dad was committed to the debtors' prison, and put to work in a relative's stock, like David (p. 20). Shortly soon after, when his father received a legacy that place him free, this also allowed the boy to job application his education. Dickens pictures his dad in David Copperfield as the eternally optimistic, improvident Mr. Micawber, but he advised his biographer, Forster, that he previously never overlooked the humiliation of working in the manufacturer, or forgiven his mother, who thought he should go on working. In the book, the angelic mother of David's early on childhood is replaced by the tough, cold Miss Murdstone. The second main theme of the book is the fact that goodness has nothing in connection with social position, and sociable position is all too often equated with riches. Here again, Dickens' personal experience was relevant. As an unhealthy young shorthand copy writer, he had fallen in love with the daughter of a banker, whose daddy sent her in foreign countries to keep her out of Dickens' way, as Mr Spenlow blueprints regarding Dora. Spenlow's frame of mind towards David changes when David's aunt manages to lose her money. When he says 'I thought you were a gentleman' he implies that being truly a gentleman is a matter of money, not of being 'a soft man', as David is.

This tendency to equate money and cultural position with virtue corrupts character types' common sense and conducts. The proud rich boy, Steerforth, might have been a good man but has been spoilt by an indulgent mother. Consequently, he appears down on poor fishermen, ignoring their individual qualities, and needs good thing about Emily ('ruins her' in the terms of the time) but will not marry her. In contrast, Ham, the humble fisherman who liked Emily, dies seeking to save lots of him. On the other end of the public range, envy of others' social position leads Uriah Heep, who always stresses that he's 'humble', to cheat Mr Wickfield and dream of marrying Agnes. David himself is not corrupted. From the beginning, he judges everyone on their merits, refusing to accept that people are inferior because they are poor.

3. Meaning a semi-biographical novel

A semi-autobiographical book is loosely predicated on the experiences of the author's own life. A semi-autobiographical book may be written to protect the privateness of the author's family, friends, and family members; to achieve psychological distance from the topic; or for imaginative reasons, such as simplification of storyline lines, themes, and other details.

Charles Dickens and David Copperfield

A lot of critics think of David Copperfield as Dickens's autobiographical novel. To read David Copperfield is to comprehend Dickens, that will further deepen the understanding of Dickens's other works. David Copperfield is looked upon by many as the author's masterpiece. Dickens began to write David Copperfield in l849. David Copperfield was thus produced under such designed and well designed writing, which, added special dramatic affect to the reviews. Autobiographical elements in David Copperfield include Dickens' experience working in a stock as a kid, reflections on his father's impact in his life (Micawber is basically based on Dickens' father), his work as a paper reporter writing on the debates in Parliament, his development as a novelist (the publication is written in the first person by a writer looking back again on his formative years), and his encounters in things of the center. Near the end of his profession, Dickens accepted that, of all the "children" he previously produced, he adored David Copperfield the most.

4. 1 similar life activities between David and Dickens

David Copperfield is presented more formally as a semi-autobiography, you start with the protagonist's birth. Like Dickens, David was created on a Friday, Because of condition. Little Dickens cannot be a part of boy's game. He liked to learn literature while other kids were playing outside the house˜Dickens always read literature in his father's catalogue˜In his novel, 1ittle David also liked to read literature in David's father's catalogue. Dickens proved helpful as a kid labor pasting labels onto bottles. David experienced the same experience after his mother was useless. In Dickens's career, he had to be first a legislations clerk, a reporter and lastly a successful novelist. In the booklet of David Copperfield David acquired taken the same career, even the same order. David's complex character permits contradiction and development during the period of the book˜David also exhibits great tenderness, as in the moment he realize his love for Agnes for the very first time. David, especially, as a young man in love, could be foolish and affectionate. This is very same to Dickens himself. As he grew up, he developed a more mature viewpoint and searched for a love who will concern him and help his increase˜David fully matured as an adult when he expressed the sentiment that he respected Agnes's peaceful tranquility total else in his life.

Any sense of self-importance is immediately deflated however by the digressively self-deprecating laughter of the beginning (which recalls Tristram Shandy sometimes) and by the narrator's desire to have his life to speak for itself (which recalls chapter one of Roderick Random). Throughout this novel we sense Dickens's delight in experimenting with that which was for him a fresh narrative method, and in the opening chapter he shows that working within established literary conventions they can produce a far better mingling of humor and pathos than any of his predecessors. The first touch of pathos is when David - shifting briefly forward with time - recalls the "indefinable compassion" he thought for his father's grave in the churchyard "when our little parlor was warm and bright with fire and candle, and the doors of the house were - almost cruelly, it seemed to me sometimes - bolted and locked against it". This is typical of the book in that the narrator recalls the ingenuousness of his more youthful personal with a soothing irony that only assists to focus on the level of sensitivity of the child. In chapter two this impact is strengthened by the often startling immediacy of the present tense (also followed in four subsequent 'retrospective' chapters). Here Dickens discloses the radical otherness of the child's notion of the world (in the added alertness of certain senses and various awareness of the psychological and physical proportions of things); the anxieties that accompany that point of view (David is even worried that Mr Chillip must feel disappointed about a cathedral tablet expressing that "physicians were in vain", and the primary buoyancy of junior that reduces the period of any unpleasant thoughts (almost Immediately afterwards he believes "just what a good place" the pulpit would be to "play in"). Dickens is particularly understated in his mingling and contrasting of the points of view of the more youthful protagonist and mature narrator.

4. 2 Similar flirtatious disposition between David Copperfield and Charles Dickens

4. 2. 1 David Copperfield's Flirtatious Disposition

David Copperfield, articled to the proctor's office of Spenlow and Jorkins in London, fell in love with Mr. Francis Spenlow's only daughter Dora initially sight, and acquired involved to her. He had written to Agnes, the attorney Mr. Wickfield's only little princess and David's 'adopted sister' in Canterbury (Ch. 39), informing her that Dora was such a darling and was very blest; but he, while writing so, kept in mind Agnes's 'clear calm eyes and gentle face' (Ch. 34). He, it may be considered, is neither specialized in Dora nor single-minded in his affections.

When David all of the sudden learned that that his great-aunt Miss Betsy Trotwood, who was simply his guardian, was ruined, he informed Dora that he was 'a beggar, ' requesting her if her center was still his. 'Oh, yes, it's all yours, ' cried Dora, though in a childish way (Ch. 37). She, it could be said, was simple-hearted, ample and gentle. Mr. Spenlow, when told by David of his engagement with Dora, could not allow it; but he was to expire soon. David frequented Agnes and informed her of his troubles, kissing her side, which she experienced given him looking up 'with such a Heavenly face!' After talking about their concerns, David said, 'Much more than sister!' and Agnes parted 'by the name of Sibling' (Ch. 39).

David and Agnes, maybe it's considered, trust the other person affectionately. How would Dora feel, we ask yourself, if she seemed on this look? Dora, presented by David to Agnes, found her 'too brilliant' and was 'scared of her. ' She asked David, 'what relation is Agnes for you?' 'No blood-relation, but we were brought up together, like brother and sister, ' replied he. Dora said, 'I ponder why you ever fell in love with me?' (Ch. 42). Dora, surely, did know of his flirtatious disposition and she could have left him permanently, but she did not. For David, he himself chose and committed Dora, who was 'a Fairy, a Sylph' (Ch. 26), not Agnes, who had 'a very placid and special expression' and was her widower father's 'little housekeeper' (Ch. 15). Soon David often quarreled with Dora over trifles. He said, 'Dora, my darling!' 'No, I am not your darling. Because you must be sorry that you married me, or else you wouldn't reason with me!' came back she. Dora, it is clear, was viewing a shadow of Agnes behind him.

However, after such altercations, Dora reflectively advised him she'd be 'a wonderful housekeeper, ' polishing the tablets, pointing the pencil, buying an tremendous account-book, etc. , though the figures would not add up. Now David was beginning to be known as a copy writer, and his 'child-wife, ' as she asked him to call her, was endeavoring to 'be good' (Ch. 44). It could be considered that currently David should have said, 'Dora, my darling, I really like you cordially and am happy; although you may are not good at housekeeping and information, you ought not mind it by any means because you are earnestly endeavoring to be good; you may already know, I too am "a boyish partner as to years"' (Ch. 44). David, without expressing such things, tried out to 'form Dora's mind, ' but in vain, remembering 'the contented days and nights with Agnes' (Ch. 48), he even considered that his own center was 'undisciplined' when it first treasured Dora, and this there may be 'no disparity in marriage, like unsuitability of head and purpose. ' His own heart, it can be suspected, was nonetheless 'undisciplined' because he'd have been seduced by Agnes's 'clear quiet eyes and mild face' more than by Dora's work to be good; he is able to be thought to be flirtatious, not as dedicated. Such being the truth, he was much happier in the next year, the year that Dora fell sick (Ch. 48). She, with 'little or nothing left to want, ' wanted very much to see Agnes, not her two spinster aunts, adding that she always was 'a ridiculous little thing' and 'too young' not only 'in years' but 'in experience, and thoughts, and everything, ' and this she had started to believe herself 'not fit to be always a better half' to her 'very ingenious' man. She died leaving Agnes 'a last charge' that only Agnes 'would take up this vacant place' (Chs. 53 and 62).

Was Dora 'silly' or 'not fit to be a wife'? In no way! Though she might have been childish and poor at housekeeping and figures, she was blessed with many respectable and lovable virtues; for example, she did not reject David as a beggar, nor desert him despite her father's will and David's suspicious romantic relationship with Agnes. She tried earnestly to be a good wife, accepted Agnes' and David's cleverness without defying them, searched down humbly on herself as foolish and immature, and still left her man with Agnes foreseeing her death. How serious, harmless, soft and sympathetic! Alternatively, David, even though 'very brilliant, ' was certainly flirtatious, intolerant, and cold-hearted. He should not have created Dora to Agnes; definately not it he should have cracked off his relationship with Agnes in choosing Dora, must have expressed his appreciation to her on her behalf not abandoning him and for her trying to be good, should have been good to her faults as Dora have been to his. He should have known that he previously much of the responsibility for her thoughts of insecurity when she said, 'I was too young' and 'you are incredibly brilliant and I never was' (Ch. 53). After Dora's loss of life, David set out to travel to European countries, and 'mourned for [his] child-wife, extracted from her blooming world, so young. ' He attempted to be 'a better man, ' thinking that he 'might possibly hope to cancel the mistaken previous, also to be so blessed concerning marry' Agnes (Ch. 58). If he marries her, it could be said, is determined by him, but he'd have to humble himself and repent, not merely 'cancel, ' 'the mistaken former' or his flirtatious mind.

He came back home after three years, and confided to Agnes, 'I went away, dear Agnes, adoring you. I stayed away, caring you. I delivered home, adoring you. ' How inconsistent! He previously said that he 'mourned' for Dora when heading away! As for Agnes, she replied, 'I have loved you all my life' (Ch. 62). How would Dora feel if she lived to listen to the conversation? Dora, it can be considered, must have remaining David when she first achieved Agnes; it could have been because of Agnes's covert love for him that Dora was afraid of her! Within a fortnight David committed Agnes, and she confided to him Dora's 'previous question' and 'previous charge' as mentioned above, plus they wept together but they would not imagine with what thoughts Dora had passed away; also, David did not utter any words of remorse and repentance for having been struggling to make Dora happy (Ch. 62). A decade after the relationship, they had three children, and David got high income and renown as an eminent author. As of this happy home, Dora was not talked of whatsoever (Ch. 63).

It can be concluded that David was a man of your flirtatious disposition for which reason he lacked complete devotion to Dora. As will be mentioned, that very disposition was also Dickens's at that time.

4. 2. 2 Dickens's Flirtatious Disposition

Dickens have been looked upon as 'a very Joseph in all that relation morality, chastity, and decorum' as Reynolds's Weekly News composed on 13 June 1858 (Words 8: 745n. ). He previously been accepted consequently a guy publicly but was rather flirtatious-minded in his private life; in this section it'll be unveiled how flirtatious Dickens was. Dickens was a serious Christian-minded man, but naturally he was 'a man' in the sense that 'there is not any man that sinneth not' (1 Kings 8: 46; 2 Chron. 6: 36; see also John 8: 37, etc. ). He was alternatively flirtatious; as he said, not so long after his marriage, to his wife Catherine, 'if either of [us] fell in love with anybody else, [we] were to tell one another' (Storey 96), and he does show 'an archly flirtatious attitude towards congenial females and women of his acquaintance' (Slater, D & W 122). Six of the 'ladies and women' are taken up below. First, there was Mrs. David Colden, little princess of your banker of NY, wife of an attorney and philanthropist of New York, and fourteen years Dickens's older, with whom Dickens became acquainted during his first visit to America in 1842. Dickens was 'deeply in love with' her, and published a love-letter to her (Slater, D & W 122; Characters 3: 30n. , 160, and also 242 and n, 219-20). Second, there is Eleanor Emma Picken, a lithographer and successful of the Societyof Arts silver precious metal Isis medal in 1837, by whom Dickens was fascinated. He flirted with her on the pier at Broadstairs on an evening in September 1841:

Dickens seemed out of the blue to be possessed with the demon of mischief; he threw his arm around me and ran me down the willing plane to the finish of the jetty till we reached the tall post. He put his other arm around this, and exclaimed in theatrical shades that he intended to hold me there till 'the unhappy sea waves' should submerge us. I implored him to i want to go, and battled hard to release myself. (Slater, D & W 115)

Third, there was Christiana Jane Weller, a beautiful eighteen-year-old concert pianist in Liverpool, for whom Dickens conceived an 'incredible feeling' in 1844 (Slater, D & W 88-89; Characters 4: 53n. , 55, etc. ). Fourth, there is Madame Emile de la Rue, wife of a Swiss banker, resident in Genoa, whose nervous disorder Dickens started to treat along with his mesmerism from 23December 1844 with so much fascination as to make Catherine very miserable. This continued for an interval of years after (Schlicke 375; Letters 4: 243 and n, 534n. ; Characters 5: 11n. ; Letters 7: 224 and n).

Fifth, there is Neglect Anne Romer, actress and singer. Dickens performed with her, on 20 July 1848, the farce of CONSUMED, in which Dickens enjoyed the uninterested hero Sir Charles Coldstream, and she performed his fan Mary. In Take action II, Sir Charles, who is in stress, asks her to state, 'you love me. ' She replies, 'Love you!' Then he 'seizes her in his forearms, and kisses her'; they marry at the play's end (Thomson 46-49; Words 5: 362n. ).

Two days after the play, Dickens composed a notice to Mrs. Cowden Clarke, person in his Novice Theatricals:

I haven't any energy whatever--I am very unpleasant. I loathe local hearths. I yearn to be always a Vagabond (i. e. as Coldstream, disguised as a ploughboy, is called by Farmer Wurzel in Take action II).

Why can't I marry Mary! [. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ]

I am deeply miserable

A real house like this, is insupportable from then on canvass farm wherein I had been so happy (i. e. Wurzel's farm). Exactly what is a humdrum meal at half earlier five, with no person (but John [i. e. CD's servant John Thompson]) to see me eat it, compared with that soup [i. e. the pea-soup that Coldstream is given by Mary in Action II], and the a huge selection of pairs of eye that viewed its disappearance!

(Words 5: 374 and n; emphases added)

In this quotation there can be read not only Dickens's flirtatious head but also his loathing for domesticity. Within the letter of 13 January 1849 quoted below, he even shows his dislike for Catherine:

My Dear Mrs. Clarke.

I am frightened that Young Gas [i. e. Dickens's name as director of the Beginner Theatricals Company in 1848] is permanently dimmed, and that the breathing of calumny will blow henceforth on his stage management, by reason of his extensive delay in coming back you the two pounds non forwarded by Mrs. G. [i. e. Catherine]. The suggested deduction due to which you delivered it, was never made.

--But possessed you seen him in "Consumed",

His eye so beaming and so clear,

When on his stool he sat to sup,

The oxtail--little Romer near

&c &c

--you would have forgotten and forgiven all.

(Characters 5: 476 and n; emphases added)

Sixth, there is Neglect Mary Boyle, daughter of Vice-Admiral the Hon. Sir Courtenay Boyle, second child of the 7th Earl of Cork and Orrery; she was a distant cousin of Mrs. Watson's and a miscellaneous article writer and renowned amateur celebrity, whom Dickens first achieved at the Watsons' Rockingham Castle on 27 November 1849. Within the 29th he and Boyle played, within the house-party entertainments in the Hall, Sir Peter Teazle and Sweetheart Teazle from Sheridan's The School for Scandal, and also acted, from chapter 41 of Nicholas Nickleby, some displays of the mad neighbour's [i. e. Dickens's] throwing a shower of vegetables to Mrs. Nickleby [i. e. Boyle] to display his love (Letters 5: 662 and n; Boyle 231-32; Ackroyd 606).

On November 30 Dickens published a notice to Mrs. Watson: 'Plunged in the deepest gloom, I write these few words to let you know that, just now, when the bell was dazzling ten, I drank to H. E. R. [i. e. , Mary Boyle]!' adding a picture of a center shot through by Cupid's arrow (Words 5: 663). Three times later he sent to Pass up Mary Boyle a parody by him of Gray's Elegy in a Country Churchyard, 'inspired by Mary Boyle's graces in the Rockingham Castle Amateur Theatricals' (Words 5: 665 and n, 708-09), part of which is as uses:

No more the variety, as though he dealt at cards,

Smiling deals lighted candles about:

No more the Rational (including the Bard's)

Persist in blowing all the candles out.


No more the Good prolong the cheerful tread

Of dancing toes until the lights low burn up:

No more the number, when they are gone to foundation,

Quickly retreats, foreboding their return. (Characters 5: 708)

Mary Boyle joined in his theatricals on 15 January 1851 at Rockingham Castle, where she acted Mary, the enthusiast of Sir Charles Coldstream, again enjoyed by Dickens in Used Up (Letters 6: 163n. , 225 and n, 261n. ; Slater, D & W 404).

Dickens published a joking, flirtatious notice, predicated on the play in which he disguised himself as a ploughman, to her on 25 Dec 1852:

My own darling Mary.

[. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ]

you ant no reason to be jealous for those that I am certain beforehand as I shall a Door her O Mary when you come to learn the last section of another quantity of Bleak House I believe my ever dear as you will say as him whatever we is aware on as done a fairly womanly thing as the love-making will like so that can make a sweet pint for to turn the storyplot on my center alive for such you are [].

(Words 6: 835-36)

Dickens ended this letter with an 'x' which represented a kiss and the final of 'This is a Kiss my dear' with the blot of an fingerprint between 'Kiss' and 'my. ' In some characters from Dickens to Boyle, Ada Nisbet finds 'a gradual increase in intimacy from "My Dear Neglect Boyle" (in 1850) to "Beloved Mary" (in 1856)' and 'something of Dickens's restless dissatisfaction with the domestic hearth before he fell deeply in love with Ellen' (Nisbet 81; Fielding 323).

One of the letters which he, with a frigid, published to Mary on 15 March 1856, was relatively like someone to his partner: 'Then it is my dear that I wish you were with me at night, occupying Tavistock House and forgetting mankind' (Nisbet 82; Words 8: 72). These occasions illustrate Dickens's flirtatious temperament sufficiently, so it could be deduced from them that David Copperfield's flirtatious disposition was a reflection of Dickens's own.


David Copperfield was an alter ego of Charles Dickens, and the former's flirtatious, frivolous dispositions were the latter's. David's figure and the autobiographical element in the book make us readers very uncomfortable; in this sense David Copperfield can not be recognized as a masterpiece. The book gives off an odious smell foreboding Dickens's later peripetia.

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